Category Archives: Fashion

Summer News

Apologies for the long gap between posts, things have been pretty busy around here! A few things I must mention though! –

* My flash story, “The Sea Does Not Need Me,” appears in the new issue of Scheherezade’s Bequest – Something Rich and Strange: Tales from the Sea. It was inspired by the ballad “The Great Silkie of Sule Skerry” (Child 113). This collection is truly gorgeous (as the cover demonstrates admirably!) and I hope you get a chance to check it out! I am honored to be a part of it :).

* Also, my poem titled “Ink” is in the latest issue of Liminality Magazine. This one really means a lot to me, as it was written shortly after my brother died as a way of attempting to cope. I’m very happy it found a home alongside so many interesting, moving, beautiful poems.

* My other big news is that I’ve relaunched my faerie tale fashion blog, Dress of Stars! It’s about time, right?

dressofstarsThe official description says it’s meant to be “the fashion diary of a witch faerie folklore & literature grad student who loves to tell stories, even with her clothes,” so outfit posts for sure, but I also want it to be a place where I can write about this kind of fashion more broadly, post about my own fashion/jewelry related creative endeavors, look at new things others are doing, and even examine faerie/fairy tale fashion through a more academic lens. I’m interested in the drive to bring magic into everyday life in all aspects and, as fashion is one of the ways I personally tend to do it most, I’m fascinated by exploring that world more consciously. As some of you may know, I recently contributed the entry for “Fashion” in the new Greenwood Encyclopedia publication Folktales and Fairy Tales: Traditions and Texts from Around the World, 2nd Edition (which will be officially released in December of this year), and I’m excited to do more with the concept in my academic work. Some of you may also remember my post from a while ago, “Fashion and Academia,” in which I talk about the issues surrounding being a woman who is interested in fashion but also an academic. I still stand by everything I said in that post and I hope the new blog will also give me a dedicated space to write more posts like it.

I’ve already made several outfit posts but for more on the blog’s restart specifically, please read my first post upon being “back” :). As I talk about in more detail there, I’ve been contemplating a relaunch for a while now but actually doing it was largely inspired by the new Facebook group I co-admin called Daily Fae-shion!

My friend Grace Nuth and I wanted a place online where those of us who are inspired by and encourage “magic in daily attire” could gather and share their outfits, their finds, their creations, and their inspirations. The official group description, written by Grace, sums it up quite nicely I think –

This group is devoted to inspiring and encouraging magic in daily attire. If your dream wardrobe would be at home among the ephemera of a Brian Froud painting…if flowers in your hair aren’t just for Renaissance Festivals…and even if your taste runs more to bat pendants and crow feathers among the spikes on your shoulder pads…this is the group for you. Pinterest is wonderful, and can inspire, but we are hoping to share with each other *real* examples of *real* people wearing their daily clothes and trying to infuse them with a touch of fairy tale. Maybe you work in an office where you have to mostly “hide your wings,” but you still find little ways (through jewelry, footwear, etc) to feel magical. We’d love to see that too! If you have a knack for altering or accessorizing Goodwill and thrift store finds to create a whimsical ensemble, we would love to know your tricks!

If the words Bohemian/Boho/Mori Girl/Black Forest Mori Girl/Goth/Medieval/Faerie/Flower Child/Princess/Witch describe the clothes you wear and/or love, then please join!

The group has *really* taken off and I encourage you to join if you’re at all interested! I’m delighted with how inspiring it’s been to so many people and how fantastic and inspired it makes *me* feel every day :).

There should be some more things to announce soon but that’s all for now.  Otherwise work continues (slowly) on the dissertation and the various other commitments I probably shouldn’t have made but did ;).

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A Collection of Lovely Things This Morning

A small collection of lovely things for you to peruse this morning…

x. Mythic Delirium 0.2 has been released and is available for purchase here! It contains my poem “WereMoonMother,” a piece I am especially proud of. I’ll make an exclusive post about this when my poem is featured for free on the website in November but I highly recommend purchasing the whole issue if you can, it’s incredible :).

x. The Public Domain Review’s Pinterest is absolutely awesome. So many cool pictures to check out!

x. Karen Russell, one of my all time favorite writers, was recently awarded a MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Fellowship! I love the video interview with her they have.

x. An absolutely gorgeous post on fox lore by Terri Windling :). I feel that the fox is one of my spirit animals (not to mention I just love them) and this post is wonderful. It made me go back and look at one of my favorite pieces I’ve ever written, “Kitsune, Fox,” a short story published in the sadly now gone Jabberwocky Magazine in 2011.

x. I love this video by Mary Epworth

I just discovered her work and it’s really, really great. Also, ah, I want her outfits, especially that fantastic black dress!!

Hope you’re all having a good Thursday so far!

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My Room in Ohio

Inspired by this Vogue piece on the amazing Florence Welch’s home, I decided that my own rooms were due for a good cleaning and re-organzing. In the middle of this I realized that I had promised pictures of my space here in Ohio and had never delivered so I am doing so now! There are a bunch more pictures on my Facebook page but here is a taste :). –





Again, many more on Facebook (with commentary too!)

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Would You Like a Bunch of Links?

End of semester. Things are crazy. Here are some cool things from the Internetz –

I hope you’re all surviving this busy time of year!

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Outfit Post: First Day as a PhD Student

First Day as a PhD Student

Ahhh, I am far too awake for how early it is… I recently attended the After Grimm: Fairy Tales and the Art of Storytelling Conference in the UK (more on this soon!) and am now having trouble getting back on Ohio time – I’ve been awake since 5AM or so? Not cool, Britt, there’s far too much to be done for these shenanigans! The early hour fog over my brain makes me disinclined to do anything too productive though so I thought I would make a quick outfit post to document what I wore to my OSU orientation day… I quite liked this one!

Any tips for resetting sleep schedules would be much appreciated – I have always been bad at this and I’m not sure why?

P.S. The poem that Sara Cleto and I wrote is up at Niteblade! Buy the issue to read the whole thing and support a great magazine :).

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Outfit Post: The First Real Day of Summer

First Real Day of Summer

Today was my first real day of summer vacation and it feels lovely :). Yes, there’s still lots of work to be done but I took today off. Sometimes you just have to. I got the rhinestone crescent moon pin I wore today when I was visiting Columbus looking for housing earlier this week and my gosh that was a tiring and stressful experience. Fingers crossed that I hear some good news on that front very soon! Let’s see, what else – the tiger/woman in dress shirt reminds me of Angela Carter’s “The Tiger’s Bride,” one of my all time favorite fairy tale retellings, the soap is representative of this amazing honey, cinnamon, and vanilla soup that I found in Columbus, and the Free People cardigan on Polyvore isn’t exactly the one I have but it’s pretty close!

While I was there I also got this absolutely breathtaking mirror for my new place –

I am so in love with it… it’s so fairy tale-y! I hope I can get a better picture of it once it’s up. It was featured on one of my favorite blogs, Domythic Bliss, a while ago and though I missed the post but I’m not at all surprised because it’s gorgeous and mythic and it was, after all, the awesome owner of that blog, Grace, who pointed me to the antique mall I visited in the first place! I am so happy I was the one to be able to give it a good home :).

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Fashion and Academia

I recently discovered author Ekaterina Sedia’s blog and I really like it. I skimmed through a group of old entries and, while she writes about all sorts of fascinating things, my favorite posts are those that deal with fashion. An especially good post is the one on “Not Sexy Dressing” that she wrote as part of a Feminist Fashion Bloggers group post. This paragraph particularly spoke to me –

“In academia, one is already looked down upon if one shows interest in fashion – and part of it, I think, is the conflation of fashion with sexualized images of women. It doesn’t have to be, of course, but sadly we live in the world of binaries: sexy or frumpy, slut or blue stocking, etc etc. So the shortcut goes from well-dressed to fashiony to sexy to vapid. The opposite is of course the stereotypical female academic who takes her work too seriously to spend even a minute thinking about clothing – and those are perceived as sex-hostile and/or mannish. Being respected and perceived as competent becomes almost impossible without personal style becoming a statement of self-denial. And we need this third thing.”

We really do need this third thing. Personal style is incredibly important and this post spoke to some of my worries about maintaining a blog under my real name where I post about fashion related things. I admit I’ve gone back and forth about whether or not I want to post fashion related entries here because I worry that I will give up the perception of academic competence. I worry that people will look at my blog and call my seriousness into question, that it makes me appear vapid and superficial. At the same time, I hate that this happens and I want to go against it. I find fashion fascinating and my personal style is important to me. I admit that I like posting about what I wear, what I like, and what inspires me in this area.

As a folklore and literature academic, I do think that I have a bit more freedom in this area than, say, a graduate student in the sciences. Folklorists in particular have a reputation for being snappy dressers and I believe that what we study encourages the incorporation of unique and different fashions into our own wardrobe. Many of my favorite pieces, for example, are favorites because they have something to do with literature or folklore. I plan outfits inspired by particular books, I have bought much of my jewelry because it has some kind of cultural significance or folklore behind it, and I don’t mind admitting that I like to look like I just stepped out of a fairy tale.

I’m certainly not the only one in academia who loves fashion and I don’t think I should be ashamed of it in any way. I really like the manifesto of the great but sadly defunct website AcademiChic

“Cultural critic Fred Davis calls fashion “a visual language, with its own distinctive grammar, syntax, and vocabulary.” Theorist Judith Butler, in Gender Trouble, points to the power of clothing to create and constantly recreate identity. And even philosopher Charles Baudelaire praised cosmetics and garments for creating beauty where nature fails. In short, fashion is a powerful tool for creating identity, subverting class or gender norms, performing self, and appreciating aesthetic beauty.”

So I’m going to continue to make posts about fashion here. It’s part of who I am and I am proud of it.

P.S. On a completely other note, I have noticed the extreme issues with the individual post pages (and a few issues on the main page as well) so I’m going to a simpler theme until those can be resolved. I’m honestly not sure what the problem with the Atlantica theme is, it seems to have started with the last update. Hopefully this simple theme will make reading posts and making comments here much easier! Any feedback greatly appreciated :).

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